beyond the comfort zone

Our Hillsong 40 Days of Revival Devo encouraged us to do something with what we had in our hands – to be generous and selfless.

I wasn’t sure if this would make much of a difference but the Whatsapp group that I’m part of, encouraged me to go ahead anyway…

I bought my Big Issue from a guy at the corner of Collins St at Southern Cross Station.

I asked how his day was and he said not very good; he warned me that there was another individual going around begging and I should be aware of him.

I asked him what his story was and he was taken aback, so I asked him how he got involved with the Big Issue and he told me he had been selling them for 6 yrs after his mate had gotten involved.

I asked him if it was going well; he said that it’s going ok – he has his regular customers.

I asked if this was his regular spot he said yes, I said perhaps I can become his regular customer. He smiled.

I asked his name – James – and I gave him mine.

We shook hands and I went on my way.

Therefore if you have any encouragement from being united with Christ, if any comfort from his love, if any common sharing in the Spirit, if any tenderness and compassion,then make my joy complete by being like-minded, having the same love, being one in spirit and of one mind. Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit. Rather, in humility value others above yourselves, not looking to your own interests but each of you to the interests of the others.

In your relationships with one another, have the same mindset as Christ Jesus:

Who, being in very nature God,
    did not consider equality with God something to be used to his own advantage;
rather, he made himself nothing
    by taking the very nature of a servant,
    being made in human likeness.

– Philippians 2:1-7

– Ames – 

 

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Feature Fridays – Eat Out: Help Out Project

A new series of posts: “Feature Fridays” – I’m going to try to commit to posting something that inspires me whether it be a cause, a quote, a book, a song, a picture etc. each Friday.  I’ve also created a link from my ‘new’ blog to this one so welcome to first time readers…

One of the things I had time to reflect about during the fast was how much money I actually spend on food in any given week.  I love trying new restaurants and cafes but once I started working full-time as well, I watched my funds diminish at a more rapid pace.  I was also reading a book that made me face the reality that many people are dying of hunger everyday – 25 000 people in fact.  That’s almost a uncomprehensible number and to think that I was spending $10 for lunch each day while this is happening… I couldn’t live with that knowledge and do nothing but at the same time, I wondered about how I, as one person, could make a difference.  That’s what inspired the Eat Out: Help Out Project.

Click on the button above to learn about the concept and the purpose.  I don’t know who is going to join or even if this will ever take off but I know that I can do my part in making a difference in the lives of people other than myself and my immediate circle of friends and family.  I’ve decided that I’m going to donate my first $100 to Feed the Hungry Australia.  This was one of the first organisations that made me think that this idea was something achievable.  Their $6 = 100 meals campaign on the Australian Christian Channel has convinced me that this is something doable and something I want to get involved in.  I’m going to post food blog posts about the restaurants that I attend from now on and how much is being donated to charity each time.

I hope this encourages you to think about where you spend your money (maybe food isn’t your greatest expenditures) and who you spend it on… if the majority of it is on yourself, then perhaps it’s time to look away from self and look to helping those who could never give you anything back in return.  Let’s exchange selfishness for selflessness.

The cruelest man alive could not sit at his feast unless he sat blindfolded.

– Amy Carmichael

♥ Ames

full stop.

– 06/11/09

I’ve always highly valued my friendships.  Friendship itself ‘has no survival value; rather it is one of those things which give value to survival’ (The Four Loves- C.S. Lewis).  Good, honest-to-God friendships are hard to come by and I cherish the ones I have greatly.  But I’ve found my flaw when it comes to friendships.  It can be both a blessing and a curse if wisdom is not involved.  The pattern I’ve noticed is that I tend to want to play the ‘saviour’ role.  I’ve noticed a trend where I will always try to give selflessly of myself to benefit the other individual in the friendship.  If I see a friend in need, I have to find a way to meet it.  Selflessness is a good thing but done as a reaction to a situation without further thought can be damaging.

Lately, I’ve had trouble sleeping and getting up in the mornings has been a challenge.  I’ve found myself on the brink of tears mid-conversation a number of times and my appetite has disappeared.  If that’s not a sign that there is nothing good left to salvage, I don’t know what is.

Hence, it’s time to act.  Not with selfishness but with wisdom.  Godly wisdom.  After some intense prayer time and consultation, it’s become crystal clear what steps need to be taken.  There’s a sense of relief to have come to this conclusion.  Stepping aside with the resolve of never returning means a full stop can finally be put at the end of this story.   

Our God is the God of restoration and I believe wholeheartedly that if He sees that this will be beneficial for all involved, He’ll restore it in His own perfect timing.

So, have a good life.  Goodbye and God bless.

♥ Ames